Ballestas Islands – Peru’s Galapagos

Thanks to Olga again we all get up early for Ballestas Islands and Paracas Nature Reserve for the afternoon. There were people just going to bed after partying, the streets were a mess and places were opening.  What a paradox!

We take a bus into Paracas one hour away and Magpie gets a little more sleep. When we arrive at the pier many people are trying to sell us hats.  I figure it is for the sun and being on the water. I soon learn that it is for the number of birds and possible droppings.

Numerous birds

Numerous birds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So many birds

So many birds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birds from Paracas Nature Reserve

Birds from Paracas Nature Reserve

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The only way I can describe this day is through the pictures. It was incredible and I have included some facts we were given.

Candalabra – 176m long, 46m wide, 2m deep.  One theory says it was a direction marker too the Nasca lines. Unfortunately it would be off then.

The Candelabra

The Candelabra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sean Lions – 800 babies are born every year.

Sea lions at play, and rest

Sea lions at play, and rest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Crabs/Marine Life – is as abundant as the wildlife in the skies and on the islands.  The number of red crabs we saw floating around was incredible.  It would be easy to scoop a net full from the boat.

Guano – another name for the islands due to the number of birds.  Every 5-7 years a couple tons of guano is harvested from the islands for fertilizer.  Approximately 300 men come and live on the main island for a couple of months to harvest.

Guano islands for the number of birds and what they leave behind

Guano islands for the number of birds and what they leave behind

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Penguins – it seems odd initially but when you think about it penguins only live in the southern hemisphere but it still seems a little warm for them.  These are the Humboldt Penguins.

Humboldt penuins

Humboldt penuins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paracas Nature Reserve

This is an absolute desert but is gorgeous in its diversity. Again pictures are the best means to describe.

 

Nature Reserve Sign

Nature Reserve Sign

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

paracas.coast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

paracas.playa.roja.splash

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

paracas.coast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The area is littered with pieces of shell as it was once a sea.

The area is littered with pieces of shell as it was once a sea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When we get back to our hotel, Magpie and I have to stay another night because we cannot get a bus to Arequipa that night with Olga.

 

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